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Entries in Norway (39)

Wednesday
Jan232013

Fire Sparked by Cheese Closes Down Norwegian Tunnel

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(OSLO, Norway) -- A tunnel in Norway has been closed for the past five days, after nearly 30 tons of a delicacy cheese spontaneously burst into flames. The sweet brown cheese, known as Brunost, is apparently highly combustible.

Police spokesman Viggo Berg tells the Norwegian broadcaster NRK that the cheese's high concentration of sugar and fat can make it burn "almost like petrol if it gets hot enough." 

And burn it did: The cheese-fueled fire raged for days, injuring no one, but causing heavy damage to the Brattli tunnel in its wake.

The structure won't be reopened until engineers determine it's safe to do so.

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio

Monday
Nov122012

Norway Shooter Anders Breivik Complains About Cold Coffee in Jail

ODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images(OSLO, Norway) -- A Norwegian right-wing extremist responsible for the deadliest mass murder in his country's history is complaining about receiving inhumane treatment in prison.

Specifically, Anders Breivik is griping that his cell, along with his coffee, are always cold.

Breivik, found guilty earlier this year of the 2011 massacre of 77 people, many of them teens, is jailed in quarters that contain sections for sleeping, studying and exercising.

However, he maintains that he never gets enough butter with his bread, has to hurry through his morning shave and his handcuffs are "too sharp."

In addition, Breivik is critical of the way his cell is decorated.

Last July, the 33-year-old was judged sane by a Norwegian court and convicted on charges of terrorism and premeditated murder.  Breivik will spend a minimum of 21 years in prison rather than a mental institution and could possibly wind up behind bars for the rest of his life.

Norway, like other European countries, does not have the death penalty.

During the trial, Breivik defended his actions in court, based on the premise that Norway and the rest of the continent were becoming increasingly contaminated by allowing Muslims and other emigres to settle there and mix with Europeans.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
Aug242012

Norway Shooter Anders Breivik Ruled Sane, Sentenced to Prison

ODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images(OSLO, Norway) -- A right-wing extremist bent on ethnic cleansing was judged sane by a Norwegian court on Friday for last year's shooting and bomb deaths of 77 people.

The conviction on charges of terrorism and premeditated murder means that Anders Behring Breivik will spend a minimum of 21 years in prison rather than a mental institution, and could possibly wind up behind bars for the rest of his life.

Norway, like other European countries, does not have the death penalty.

Breivik, 33, was hoping not to be deemed insane.  He defended his actions in court, based on the premise that Norway and the rest of the continent were becoming increasingly contaminated by allowing Muslims and other emigres to settle there and mix with Europeans.

Breivik also claims he's the leader of a movement to crush multiculturalism, which he blames for the loss of Norway's national identity.  Many of his beliefs were detailed in a 1,500-page manifesto.

His killing spree unfolded on July 22, 2011 when a fertilizer bomb exploded outside government offices in Oslo, killing seven people.

The explosion was meant to be a diversion that enabled Breivik to board a ferry to Utoya Island, a 26-acre island that hosts a youth camp catering to the children of members of Norway's Labour Party and other prominent families.

Dressed as a police officer, Breivik proceeded to gun down 69 people, many of them teens.   When a Norwegian SWAT team finally arrived on the island and confronted the killer, he surrendered and was taken into custody.

During the trial, Breivik rejected being labeled a child murderer, claiming his victims were also to blame for multiculturalism.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Jul312012

Fake Bomb Spurs Evacuation in Oslo

Brand X Pictures/Thinkstock(OSLO, Norway) -- U.S. officials apologized Tuesday for mistakenly leaving a fake bomb attached to an embassy vehicle in Oslo and causing a bomb scare that led to the evacuation of the U.S. embassy, Norway's royal palace and part of downtown Oslo.

The device had been placed beneath an embassy vehicle as part of a security drill and then mistakenly left there. It was spotted by security guards at the embassy's front entrance when someone tried to drive the vehicle onto embassy grounds just after 11 a.m. local time, triggering the evacuation of the embassy and the palace, the cancellation of an international children's soccer game nearby, and an interruption of nearby subway train traffic.

Deputy State Dept. spokesperson Patrick Ventrell confirmed that the device had been used in a previous drill and then forgotten.

"This morning at our U.S. Embassy in Oslo, Norway," said Ventrell, "embassy security staff identified a suspicious device in an embassy-owned vehicle and took appropriate precautions. Upon investigation, the device was determined to be a non-threatening training device previously used in an exercise."

"We regret any disruption caused by this incident not only for visitors to the embassy and others, but neighbors, and we take any potential threat seriously and respond immediately," he said.

In Oslo, the U.S. ambassador apologized to police via a phone call, according to Norwegian media. An embassy spokeswoman also issued a public apology. "The Embassy regrets the uproar this caused," said Marit Andersen. "But to ensure the safety of embassy employees, visitors and our neighbors, it is necessary that we take every security threat seriously and act accordingly. The Embassy would like to express gratitude for the extremely fast and professional response from Norwegian emergency services. "

The Oslo bomb squad, emergency services and other agencies responded to the bomb alert. The children's soccer game was cancelled so the field could be used to land helicopters. The Oslo squad removed the object and determined that it was a dummy bomb. The Oslo City Council, according to Norwegian media, is seeking compensation for the police response.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Monday
Jul232012

Norway Commemorates One Year Since Oslo, Utoeya Massacre

ROALD, BERIT/AFP/GettyImages(OSLO, Norway) -- As the U.S. continues to come to grips with the tragedy in Aurora, Colo., Norway spent Sunday observing the one year anniversary of its worst-ever mass shooting that left 77 people dead on July 22, 2011.

Most of the victims were young activists attending a summer camp sponsored by the Labour Party on the island of Utoeya.  Earlier that day, accused killer Anders Behring Breivik also set off bombs in Oslo as a diversionary tactic, which killed several others.  The injury toll from the entire shooting spree was put at 242.

Prime Minister Jen Stoltenberg led the day of mourning by first laying a wreath in Oslo where he told mourners, "It's been a very heavy year for all of us.  Not a day has passed the tragedy has not filled the room...The bomb and bullets were aimed at changing Norway.  The Norwegian people responded by embracing our values."

The prime minister then joined the families and friends of victims on Utoeya to pay their respects to the fallen.  Other events in Norway included church services and a concert in which American singer Bruce Springsteen performed.

Breivik, who has never denied being the gunman, remains on trial.  His rationale for the crime was to call attention to the proliferation of Muslims and other immigrants in Norway and Europe, claiming the continent was losing its national identity.

Since Norway does not have the death penalty, Breivik faces either a long prison term or treatment in a psychiatric ward depending on how the court judges his sanity.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
Jun222012

Norway Shooter Anders Breivik Gets the Stage at Trial’s Close

ODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images(OSLO, Norway) -- After closing arguments today, a Norwegian court will determine the fate of Anders Breivik, the right wing extremist who confessed to killing 77 people -- most of them teenagers -- in a rampage in Norway last July. But the shooter may have already won part of what he wanted all along: a world stage to spread his anti-Muslim message.

At the end of his trial, which began in April, Breivik took the stand to say that he was justified in killing dozens of youths at a summer camp for the country's liberal party and that history would exonerate him, according to local and international media reports. Breivik, who has confessed to the killing, said it was "self-defense," a preemptive strike against Muslims and "multi-culturalism" he believed were taking over Europe.

"History shows that you have to commit a small barbarism to prevent a bigger barbarism," the 33-year-old Norwegian said Friday. "The attacks on July 22 were preventive attacks to defend the indigenous Norwegian people... I therefore demand to be acquitted."

In what was described as a rambling statement, Breivik also decried perceived faults in the world, everything from Norwegians with non-Norwegian roots participating in the Eurovision Song Contest to the flippant attitude towards sex featured in the television series Sex in the City. Breivik claimed that fellow right-wing compatriots were behind a recent bomb scare at a Swedish nuclear plant.

Family members of several of Breivik's victims who were present in the court reportedly responded to the diatribe by walking out.

The court is expected to rule on the issue of Breivik's sanity before passing sentence. He will either be sent to prison or a psychiatric facility. Prosecutors have asked that he be ruled insane, but Breivik has argued that he was sane during the shooting and considered being called insane the "ultimate humiliation."

Regardless of the outcome, Breivik appears to have accomplished a key part of his plan to battle mutli-culturalism, as laid out in a 1,500-page manifesto posted online just before the massacre.

The meticulous manifesto describes a 60-year "war" against minorities in Europe waged by a secret group called the new Knights Templar and says that getting arrested is all part of the plan.

"Your arrest will mark the initiation of the propaganda phase," Breivik wrote. "Your trial offers you a stage to the world."

"In light of your newly acquired status as a living martyr for the cause, this newly acquired influential position will allow you to significantly contribute to further consolidation of either a national or pan-European Overseer organization or the establishment of a national prison movement (preferably political)," he says. "Alternatively: Escape from prison and initiate your 'bonus operation.'"

As of this report, no new right-wing pan-European Overseer organization has been identified.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jun062012

Prosecutors: Alleged Norway Killer Played 'World of Warcraft' 7 Hours Per Day

ODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images(OSLO, Norway) -- Anders Breivik, the right-wing extremist who has confessed to killing 77 people during a murder spree in Norway last summer, played the violent computer game World of Warcraft nearly seven hours a day for several consecutive months before his attack, prosecutors say.

Breivik, 33, already known to have a long history with the online role-playing game, was particularly absorbed by it between November 2010 and February 2011, when he played for an average of 6 hours and 50 minutes per day, according to prosecutors.

The new evidence in Breivik's ongoing trial was presented in an Oslo court on Wednesday. When asked about his interest in the game by a prosecutor, Breivik angrily dismissed the idea that playing World of Warcraft had any connection to his attacks, according to media reports.

"It is not relevant to this case whatsoever," Breivik said, getting so upset that he threatened to turn off his microphone, according to Norwegian newspaper Verdens Gang.

On July 22, 2011, Breivik detonated a bomb in central Oslo that killed eight people, and then shot and killed 69 people attending a youth summer camp on the nearby island of Utoya. Breivik admitted mounting the attacks after his arrest, and used weapons named after Norse gods to massacre his victims.

He has previously stated that he played Warcraft, as well as another "first-person shooter" game called Modern Warfare, for hours daily.

In Warcraft, players assume the identity of an online character to use magic and weapons to battle monsters and other characters and go on quests.

According to prosecutors, Breivik played Warcraft under the aliases "Andersnordic" and "Conservatism."

Norwegian anthropologist Thomas Hylland Eriksen, who was brought in as an expert witness for Breivik's defense earlier this year, said in an interview with the British network ITN that Breivik was apparently unable to separate games from reality.

"He does not seem to be very successful at distinguishing between the virtual reality of World of Warcraft and other video games and reality," Eriksen said.

In a March 2008 post on a Web forum devoted to the game, user "Andersnordic" posted that the game had been responsible for making him "300kg, bald and pale," and told the game's developer Blizzard Entertainment, "You'll hear from my lawyer!"

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Friday
May112012

Massacre Victim’s Brother Throws Shoe at Norway Shooter

ODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images(OSLO, Norway) -- The contentious trial of the man accused of killing dozens of people in a rampage in Norway was interrupted Friday when a supposed relative of one of the victims stood up and threw a shoe at the confessed murderer.

“You killer!  You killed my brother!  Go to hell!” the man shouted, according to reporters in the room.

The shoe reportedly missed the accused, Anders Breivik, but clipped one of his lawyers, Vibeke Hein.  The incident was met with applause by some in the audience.

Breivik has confessed to killing 77 people -- a majority of them teenagers -- in a bombing and shooting rampage, but claimed it was an act of self-defense and the first move in a new crusade against “multi-culturalism” in Europe.

In a 1,500-page manifesto posted online before the attack, Breivik claims to have been just one operative in a group called the new Knights Templar that would lead a violent conservative Christian revolution -- a battle that, by Breivik’s prediction, would last 60 years.

Last month, the extremist testified that his original plan also included the beheading of the Norwegian prime minister and the bombing of Norway’s royal palace. 

Early in the trial, Breivik teared up, but not apparently for his victims.  He started to weep when the court showed a propaganda video he had created.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Apr192012

Norway Killer Wanted to Behead Prime Minister on Camera

ODD ANDERSEN/AFP/Getty Images(LONDON) -- Anders Behring Breivik, who has admitted killing 77 people in twin terror attacks in Norway last summer, testified Thursday that his original plan included chopping off the head of former Norwegian Prime Minister Gro Harlem Brundtland and posting a video of the beheading on the web.

"The plan to was to behead Gro Harlem Brundtland while it was being filmed," Breivik said in court Thursday. "It was meant to be a very powerful psychological weapon."

Breivik, a right-wing extremist who claims he committed the July 2011 murders to protest Islamic immigration to Europe, said he got the idea of decapitation from al Qaeda videos.

Breivik said he had also intended to bomb Norway's royal palace and the headquarters of Norway's Labor Party. After detonating explosives in central Oslo that killed eight, he stormed the nearby resort island of Utoya, where the Labor Party was holding a youth rally, and shot and killed 69 people.

Testifying at the fourth day of his trial, Breivik explained that he had to change his plans to set off three bombs in Oslo when building a single fertilizer-based bomb proved difficult. He said he chose the summer youth retreat of the ruling Labor Party as a target when he failed to prepare in time for a meeting of journalists and the Labor Party's annual meeting.

Brundtland had appeared at the youth retreat, but had left by the time Breivik arrived.

Breivik explained that he prepped for the Utoya Island massacre by playing the computer games "World of Warcraft" and "Modern Warfare" for hours daily. He shot his victims with two weapons named after Norse gods.

The confessed killer showed no remorse for his victims Thursday, referring to them as "traitors." He believes that members of Norway's liberal elite betrayed the country by opening it to Muslim immigration.

Breivik cried on the first day of his trial, which began Monday, but not for those he killed. He confessed to the murders, and then began crying after they played a portion of a propaganda video he had made in support of his new "crusade" in Norway.

Before the massacre, Breivik posted a 1,500-page manifesto online in which he said he was just one operative in a group called the new Knights Templar that would lead a violent conservative Christian revolution in Europe. On Tuesday, he said the Knights Templar would lead a revolt against "multiculturalist" governments.

The 33-year-old had rejected an insanity defense, saying he considered an insanity diagnosis "the ultimate humiliation." Though he was found insane in an initial examination, a second team of doctors found him to be sane.

His defense is expected to try to prove his sanity by calling both Islamic extremists and right-wing extremists to the stand during his trial to demonstrate that he is not the only one who believes "Europe is the setting for a war of religion."

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Apr182012

Accused Norweigian Mass Murderer Boasts He Would Do It Again

AFP/Getty Images(OSLO, Norway) -- The people of Norway and the rest of the world got their first real insight on Tuesday into the mindset of Anders Behring Breivik, who is standing trial in Oslo for the murder of 77 Norwegians last July, most of them young people attending a camp.

Breivik, who has not denied perpetrating Norway's deadliest murderous rampage, boldly told the court, "I would have done it again."

Showing virtually no signs of remorse, Breivik asserted, "This was the most sophisticated and spectacular political attack committed in Europe since the Second World War.  If one can force the Norwegian Labour party to change their immigration policy by executing 77 people, that will contribute to holding our values and culture."

The 33-year-old had previously confessed to first detonating a car bomb in the center of Oslo to create a diversion before embarking on a killing spree on Utoya Island where children of politicians from Norway and other countries attended a camp every summer.

Breivik has explained his rationale for the murders was to protest what he saw as the sublimation of Norway and Europe by Muslims.

Reading for an hour from a 20-page statement with few interruptions, Breivik explained, "I acted in defense of my culture and of my people and so I ask to be acquitted."

While there's little chance of that happening, Norway does not have the death penalty and it's most probable that Breivik will spend the rest of his life in a mental institution rather than prison.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio







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